All Articles
All Articles
CULTURE

The Art of Cooking

Curator Hanne Mugaas dishes on the group exhibition of food-related works

by Phuong-Cac Nguyen
on 27 April 2012
Art-of-Cooking-4.jpg

Our relationship with food knows no end, as we elevate it to divine status, play with it, turn it into nonconventional formats and even demand that it entertains us. This intimacy provides the theme behind The Art of Cooking, a group art exhibition opening 27 April 2012 at Royal T in Los Angeles that features the work of 48 artists—including Olaf Bruenning and Kenny Scharf—alongside a schedule of performances. We spoke with curator Hanne Mugaas about the concept behind the show, which runs through 1 August.

Art-of-Cooking-3.jpg
Where did the concept for the show come from?

I guess that food is something that is very basic; it's right in front of you several times a day. To me, the endless depictions of food and the explosion of food blogs seem to be about lifestyle. You are what you eat, right? While researching artists and artworks for the show, I realized that most artists have at least one work that has to do with food.

Art-of-Cooking-1.jpg Art-of-Cooking-1b.jpg
Can food ever move so far in art realm that it makes us forget what it is?

I don't think so. At least not if you spend a lot of time with the artwork. This also depends on the intention of the artist, of course. Maybe the intention was to make us forget.

Can you highlight some of the artists and pieces in the show?

One group of artists who work primarily with food is White Zinfandel, which publishes a magazine about art and food. Each issue has a specific theme: TV dinners, food fights—and they organize conceptual dinners for the launch of each one. They invite artists to explore each theme, and the result is included in the magazine. Another artist is Viktor Kopp, who paints chocolate squares; although rather than exploring chocolate, he explores the grid of painting through chocolate.

Art-of-Cooking-5.jpg
Your family is involved in the restaurant business. Did you make a jump from this universe into art?

I didn't really jump from food to art. My family are all working with, or did work with, food, but I was never interested in learning to cook. My dad owns restaurants, my brother is a chef, and my sister is the manager of a restaurant.

What did you learn from your personal background in restaurants and food that you brought into your work as a curator, and vice versa?

From food to art—I basically grew up in restaurants, so I learned the work ethic and the social aspect, which are both similar to the art world. From art to food—I've been consulting on creative aspects of my dad's business, although he's very creative himself so he doesn't need much help.

Art-of-Cooking-2.jpg
What other unique angle to food did you discover while putting together this show that you'd like to explore in another exhibit one day?

I am planning to make a cookbook including the favorite recipes of the artists in the show. I would also like to do an art show in one of my dad's restaurants in Norway, and bring in artists like Scott and Tyson Reeder to do a series of food-related performances, or White Zinfandel to do a conceptual dinner party.

Royal T
"The Art of Cooking"
Now-1 August 2012
8910 Washington Blvd.
Culver City, CA 90232

The CH25 is a showcase of creators and innovators from a broad range of disciplines who are currently working to drive the world forward.

Vanessa Newman

Redesigning pregnancy for the post-gender generation with Butchbaby & Co.

Read More
I want my customers to feel comfortable and unchanged, in that becoming pregnant didn't take away from or compromise their identity

Matt Kenyon

Fusing art and technology to disrupt concepts of corporate America

Read More
I want the work to live in the world and circulate, so it can generate more dialogue

Roxie Darling

From un-shampoo to transgender identity, the NYC colorist boldly defining the next chapter of hair

Read More
Hair color is as much a science as it is a craft

George Arriola and Monohm

An heirloom electronic for the post-smartphone era

Read More
We agonized during the design process as all hyper-obsessed craftspeople should

Jonathan Sparks

Reinventing electronic music by inventing multi-disciplinary instruments

Read More
Recorded music is becoming so cheap, so the value of music is now in live performance

Melissa Kushner

Addressing the needs of orphans and vulnerable children in Malawi through microenterprise

Read More
Poverty is complicated, there is an increasing temptation and pressure in the development space to oversimplify things

Douglas Riboud + Justin Guilbert

How a mission to create great coconut water led to a whole new way of doing business

Read More
We’ve made a conscious decision to be as transparent and honest as we can, and let people decide for themselves

Tarren Wolfe

The next-generation appliance making kitchens greener—literally

Read More
Our goal is to provide food for everyone in the world, and the best place to start is in our very own community

Alex Kalman

The tiny museum in Manhattan that’s redefining museums

Read More
The mission is to put this small simple and powerful tool into the hands of as many people as possible

Corinne Joachim Sanon

The chocolatier bringing social change to Haiti and bean-to-bar chocolate to the world

Read More
Seeing the poverty surrounding me and the lack of jobs and opportunity bothered me

Cynthia Breazeal

How an emotional, empathetic robot named Jibo stands to revolutionize communication

Read More
The thing that's so provocative about social robots is that it's fundamentally a community technology

Marcus Weller

Using technology to turn motorcycle helmet design on its head

Read More
I was taken aback both by the number of people that doubted it, and by the equally large number of people that got behind it

Leopoldine Huyghues Despointes

The young filmmaker and non-profit founder who just wants people to follow their dreams

Read More
I feel confident and ready to accomplish so much more, the movement is on

Pauline van Dongen

The Dutch designer blazing the wearable technology path

Read More
I’m fascinated by concepts of change, movement, energy and perception; since they are closely related to the way we experience the world

Tal Danino

The bioengineer who’s programming DNA to fight cancer

Read More
[Manipulating genes] is very new, people are just learning how to program these organisms

Sarah Kunst

The entrepreneur single-handedly changing the landscape for women in tech

Read More
People who live on a planet that is half women but can never seem to find any when they need one, I have solved your problem

Sabine Seymour

A future where smart clothes are as ubiquitous as zippers

Read More
In the future you will not buy a piece of 'functional' clothing without SoftSpot

Joshua Harker

Pushing the boundaries of sculpture with intricate 3D printing

Read More
My intent was to explore and depict the architecture of the imagination, to interpret and share forms evident in the mind’s eye

Kathleen Supové

The NYC performance artist who’s radically reinventing the piano recital

Read More
I like pieces that are virtuosic, that show off the piano and what it can do, and are awe-inspiring

Kegan Schouwenburg

Revolutionizing orthotics through 3D-printed insoles

Read More
What orthotics do is they effectively change the geometry of what your alignment is like

Eelke Plasmeijer

The locally driven restaurant that’s upending Balinese food culture

Read More
We really try to keep things simple and let the produce do the talking

Dan Barasch + James Ramsey

A quest to make the future brighter—underground

Read More
We both share a passion for groundbreaking technology and a shared love of New York

Meredith Perry

How searching the Internet helped a 22-year-old invent wireless electricity

Read More
It’s not about where the information is, it’s about how you use the tools

LaToya Ruby Frazier

Documenting the slow, troubling change in Braddock, Pennsylvania

Read More
I am not a journalist, I am a conceptual documentary artist using my visual expression for building narratives that are unseen and unheard

Lulu Mickelson

A civic leader bringing change to NYC through design

Read More
Human-centered design is one of the many tools that we can use to better engage the public
Loading More...